(Mosaic floor at the National Gallery, London.)
A few years ago I started keeping a very informal gratitude journal. Life was feeling a bit tough, and I’d read that making time to be aware of things you are grateful for could increase wellbeing. So I started to take a few minutes each evening to write down three things I’d been grateful for during the day.
I was curious to see whether making a conscious effort to notice small moments of gratitude on a daily basis would make any difference to the way I felt. I actually noticed a difference quite quickly. It wasn’t dramatic, but I soon realised that even on bad days I usually had something to be grateful for, and I started to take pleasure in noticing these moments in each day and remembering them later on. I find it an enjoyable habit and I’ve kept it up for the last few years like a mini-journal.
I also find Instagram a great way to capture positive moments. I find that my Instagram feed is usually full of very positive and inspiring images, and I like to keep mine for sharing things that have lifted my spirits:
(Some recent pictures from my Instagram feed: top row – first blossom on my baby cherry tree, lichen on a walk with my mum, daffodil shadows, swatching for my Japan Sleeves sweater; second row – finished Palmyre shawl, home-grown veg from the garden, leaf embroidery on the sky and Norwegian mittens at Unravel 2015.)
Slowing down to notice small pleasures and be grateful can be very powerful.
This month, one of the things I’ve been grateful for has been the A Playful Day Love Your Blog Challenge, and this post on the theme of “gratitude” is my last in that challenge. Taking part has been a great way of discovering lots of inspiring bloggers and trying out a different way of blogging (as I’d never used prompts before), and I’ve really enjoyed it. Thank you to Kate for hosting the challenge and introducing me to so many interesting people, and thanks to everyone who has taken part and shared their ideas – I’ve loved reading your posts and discovering a new community. x